Feeds

CIOs' most likely job move is a sideways shift

CEOs don't seek advice from CIOs and expect them to leave

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

CIOs have a great opportunity to boss innovation in their organisation, but they’re not valued as strategic advisors by their CEOs, most of whom think they’ll be out of the door soon, according to analysts and IT leaders.

Gartner analyst Terick Chiu used a keynote at the CIO Executive Summit 2012 in Hong Kong on Wednesday to expand on that the classic problem of IT leaders failing to engage properly with the business.

Recent research from the analyst of over 200 CEOs globally found that although a sizeable proportion (39 per cent) said they planned to spend more on IT in 2012, only five per cent rated their CIO as a close strategic advisor.

CFOs came out top in that respect, with 60 per cent of respondents valuing their chief number cruncher as closest advisor, while the role of COO also scored highly (40 per cent).

When it comes to innovation, CIOs fared little better in the eyes of the CEO respondents. Only around five per cent said their IT chief was responsible for managing innovation in the organisation, with the largest number (30 per cent) plumping for CEO.

Yet there are opportunities in this area. Chiu explained that around half of the respondents said they would spend money on innovation but in many industries such projects lack focus.

“In financial services around 35 per cent have no structured approach – it tends to be very ad hoc,” he added. “This is encouraging. There is an opportunity for us as CIOs to do our job better – not just managing the technology but innovating too.”

A word of warning came from CIO Connect director Geoff McClelland, however, who cautioned that CIOs looking to make a name for themselves with flashy cloud projects may come a cropper if they don’t make sure it’s all in line with regulatory requirements.

“If you’re thinking of pushing the envelope in financial services, insurance, or even other industries like healthcare you need to talk to the regulator,” he said.

“If you have discussion and the regulator says ‘no’ then most of the top management will understand … In Singapore one big player had to back out of Salesforce.com because he didn't talk to the regulator.”

Yet, rather depressingly, it could be an uphill battle for many CIOs to become the business leaders they need to be in the eyes of the CEO.

Gartner asked the survey participants where they thought their CIO's future career would lead. Some 18 per cent said they could see them as a future business leader within the organisation, while around 40 per cent replied that they’d stay in the same industry, but at a different firm.

“We may be doing extremely well as technology people but as strategic business advisors the CEO doesn't come to us to talk business strategy,” said Chiu.

“When we talk cloud computing, mobile and Big Data, are we focusing just on the technology side or the potential business capabilities? As we move from a technology angle to a more business-oriented approach there are still some opportunities to raise our profile.” ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
MI6 oversight report on Lee Rigby murder: US web giants offer 'safe haven for TERRORISM'
PM urged to 'prioritise issue' after Facebook hindsight find
BIG FAT Lies: Porky Pies about obesity
What really shortens lives? Reading this sort of crap in the papers
Assange™ slumps back on Ecuador's sofa after detention appeal binned
Swedish court rules there's 'great risk' WikiLeaker will dodge prosecution
You think the CLOUD's insecure? It's BETTER than UK.GOV's DATA CENTRES
We don't even know where some of them ARE – Maude
prev story

Whitepapers

Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
10 ways wire data helps conquer IT complexity
IT teams can automatically detect problems across the IT environment, spot data theft, select unique pieces of transaction payloads to send to a data source, and more.
5 critical considerations for enterprise cloud backup
Key considerations when evaluating cloud backup solutions to ensure adequate protection security and availability of enterprise data.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?